top of page
Commentary on Travancore State Manual
It is foretold! The torrential flow of inexorable destiny!
Cantankerous reasons

The major reason why these books are pushed away from limelight is that many of these books contain real insights on why the British rule was really the golden period in the history of the geographical area now containing Bangladesh, Pakistan and India.

The second point that arises is that the current day people of this area cannot bear the mention of any link to their ancestors. Instead of claiming any link to their very evident ancestors, whom they view with repulsion, they spin dubious stories and fables connecting them to populations with which their real link is extremely fragmentary.

Third is that many of the persons who are mentioned as great freedom fighters simply change into brutes when seen from a clearer perspective.

Fourth is the exact corollary of the last item. That is, persons mentioned as bad individuals are seen in a better light as being of benign disposition.

Fifth is the change in demeanour of certain historical persons from what they are generally supposed to be. For example, the Travancore Maharajah Marthanda Varma. If what is mentioned of him in this book has even a slight percentage of truth, then he is one of the great rulers that this peninsula has seen. In terms of clear understandings of what is what, he is seen as a great Anglophile.

Sixth is the negation of various claims of being the undisputed focus of social development by various caste organisations, when actually there is a wider context to all social development in Travancore, in the form of a supervising force at Madras Presidency. That is the English East India Company.

Seventh is a very funny claim by certain castes that certain other caste leaderships are their own sub-castes. That of Ezhava leadership claiming that Malabar Thiyyas are part of their own caste.

One sees a lot of mutual repulsions and claims among the various peoples who populated this geographical area. For instance there is this quote from Thurston’s book:

“The Tiyans are always styled Izhuvan in documents concerning land, in which the Zamorin, or some Brahman or Nayar grandee, appears as landlord. The Tiyans look down on the Izhuvans, and repudiate the relationship..................................An Izhuvan will eat rice cooked by a Tiyan, but a Tiyan will not eat rice cooked by an Izhuva”

However, it must be admitted that this superiority of Thiyyas could have been limited to the areas where the English education had been dissiminated by the English rulers. i.e. Tellichery and Cannanore.In the interiors of Malabar, the Thiyyas may have suffered from social suppression.

bottom of page